Deliberate Ignorance: Choosing Not to Know

March 26, 2021

"I do not want to see that!" On first hearing, this may not seem wise. Even less should deliberately ignoring available information be praised by scientists: isn’t science about deepening knowledge? Yet people often shield themselves from information, for instance as they do not want to be scared, or biased. In a Strüngmann-Forum, jointly organized with Ralph Hertwig, Christoph Engel has brought together a highly select group of behavioral and social scientists to conceptualize deliberate ignorance. There are constellations in which one may have reason to shield individuals from accessing certain information. Which legal institutions are capable of protecting individuals from being required to use that information? The results are available open source with MIT Press.

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